The title of the debut album from the Dean Weisser Band comes from a Carl Perkins tune. Singing drummer Dean Weisser (pronounced "Wizer") has been playing "Boppin' The Blues" for some 20 years, although the Dean Weisser Band only formed in 1997. The album, which was recorded between 1998 and 2000 portrays the rockier side of the blues scene in Minnesota.
The opening title track, which is the first of six covers, offers a good illustration of the close relationship between rhythm & blues and rock'n'roll. The band then slide into a more blues-oriented vein on "You've Got A Lot To Learn," featuring some neat harp from Gary Lampman. Lampman remains on board for the ensuing version of Paul
McCartney's swamp pop-like "Oh! Darlin'," and Keith Follese's "Spider and the Fly," which heralds the start of a series of more rock oriented tracks.
One of Weisser's heroes, Richard Torrance, appears on a couple of tracks. The first is a Torrance original "Leave My Love Behind" which is sung as a duet between Torrance and Weisser, and has been beefed up a bit. The other is the penultimate track, "Cold Feet," which is a Weisser original, where Torrance features on guitar.
The best tracks are Mark Knoll's (ex Lamont Cranston) "I Can't Leave You Alone," and the closing "Let's Go All Night," a Weisser original. The former chugs along nicely, and marks the reappearance of Gary Lampman on harp. The latter sees the band reverting to a more bluesy style, and closes the album on a high note.
With "Boppin' The Blues," the Dean Weisser Band have made a solid start to their recording career. For the most part, the band's style is situated more towards the rock end of the blues spectrum. The album will thus hold more appeal for all the blues/rockers out there. To catch up with the latest on the band, and get hold of the CD, check out the band's web site (www.visi.com/~dwband).
This review is copyright © 2001 by Gordon Baxter, and Blues On Stage, all rights reserved. Copy, duplication or download prohibited without written permission. For permission to use this review please send an E-mail to Ray Stiles.
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